Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government and its agencies procured 49.63 lakh tonnes of wheat from farmers in 2018-19 and are almost about to surpass the all-time high of 50.63 lakh tonnes (lt), that it procured in 2012-13. A senior official of UP Food and Supplies department told The Indian Express on Wednesday, “The procurement operations will be closing on June 15. With two more days to go, and with more updated information about the previous days, the total figure will cross that of 2012-13.”
In 2017-18 nearly 50 lt of rabi season wheat was procured from over 10 lakh farmers by state and central agencies said the official. 5000 official centres were opened across the 75 districts of the state to procure the wheat from the farmers and ensure a Minimum Support Price (MSP) of Rs 1,735 per quintal. “We also gave a per quintal incentive of Rs 10 for wheat that was properly cleaned and dried before bringing it to the centre,” the official added.
The wheat procurement in Uttar Pradesh almost stalled after it reached the record high of 50.36 lt in 2012-13. It recorded a major low of 6.28 lt in 2014-15, and last year it was 36.99 lt. The government set a target of procuring 50 lt out of the total 350 lt of wheat produced in the state.
As of Wednesday, the Food Corporation of India (FCI) and other state agencies had procured a total of 353.59 lt of wheat from across the country, IE reported. It is way more than the targetted amount of 320 lt this year, but below the record high of 381.48 lt, that was recorded in 2012-13. The country’s wheat output hit a record of 98.61 million, by exceeding that of last year’s 98.51 mt.
Besides wheat, the government agencies have also procured 356.81 lt of rice, as of June 11, from the 2017-18 Kharif season. This procurement is already the second highest procurement after last season’s 381.06 lt. In rice as well, the highest amount of production of 111.62 mt has been recorded in the 2017-18 kharif season, exceeding that of previous year’s 109.70 mt.
Wheat and paddy have become two more preferred grains to grow by the farmers, because of the guaranteed Minimum Support Price and the extreme market fluctuations of the other crops. The market of these two crops became significant because nearly 36 percent of the country’s wheat and 33 percent of paddy are brought to the market by government agencies.